From a bad back to a bad foot, the injuries seem to be against former Kansas center Joel Embiid. According to a report from ESPN Basketball Insider Jeff Goodman, Embiid suffered a right foot injury in one of his recent workouts. The extent of the injury is said to be unknown at this point, but it is believed that the foot could be broken.
This is gut wrenching news for Embiid, who seemed like a lock to be the number one selection in June 26th’s NBA Draft after all of his medical evaluations cleared with the Cleveland Cavaliers. Embiid’s agent Arn Tellem had this to say in regards to the injury..
“He suffered a foot injury to his right foot sometime over the last few days,” agent Arn Tellem told ESPN’s Andy Katz by phone Thursday. “He’s getting evaluations from various doctors and experts in the field. We’ll know more Friday.”
This news could have a very profound impact on what the Orlando Magic are able to do in next week’s draft. If Embiid does in fact have a broken right foot, it might scare teams away with the worry of another Sam Bowie type situation. If that were to happen, Australian point guard Dante Exum, who’s one of the top point guard prospects in the draft, could slide up into the top three if teams are worried about the foot long-term.
If this were to happen, where does it leave the Magic? Could they take the risk on Embiid and hope that he’s healthy? Do they grab their power forward in one of Noah Vonleh, Julius Randle or Aaron Gordon? Maybe they take Marcus Smart?
The possibilities would be endless, and the results of Embiid’s test on Friday could have a profound impact not only on the Magic, the draft as a whole.
Update 3:15, June 19th
According to Yahoo! Sports Adrian Wojnarowski and Embiid’s agent Arn Tellem, the Kansas big man has a stress fracture to the navicular bone in his right foot and will have surgery on Friday. Embiid will not workout for anymore teams, and will not attend next week’s NBA Draft.